Research Portal

February 27, 2024

An Ontological Analysis for Comparison of the Concepts of Sustainable Building and Intelligent Building

Borhani, A., Borhani, A., Dossick, C. S., & Jupp, J. (2024). An Ontological Analysis for Comparison of the Concepts of Sustainable Building and Intelligent Building. Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, 150(4).

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The concept of intelligent building is emerging in the contemporary built environment. Intelligent buildings aim to leverage digital technologies and information throughout the building’s life cycle (design, construction, and operation phases) to improve the building’s performance and value. In recent years, academic scholars and industry practitioners have made efforts to articulate the intelligent building concept and identify its components. However, there is still no commonly accepted definition for the term intelligent (or smart) building. Furthermore, the term is used interchangeably with similar terms such as sustainable building and high-performance building. The primary gaps in research are the lack of a holistic and clearly defined list of intelligent building components. This gap limits building stakeholders’ abilities to decide which technologies to implement in their buildings, prove its capabilities and advantages, and improve its performance. In response to the identified gaps, this research conceptualizes intelligent building in comparison with the concept of sustainable building. We identified the key components that each concept entails and conducted a comparative analysis of the identified components. The findings of this research include a categorization of intelligent building’s definitions which helps to conceptualize intelligent building and distinguish it from other similar concepts. In addition, the research team used the developed ontologies for intelligent and sustainable buildings to provide a fundamental overview of the structure of building evaluation systems and their different approaches for determining evaluation criteria. Overall, this study contributes to the body of knowledge by identifying and classifying components of intelligent buildings, which is a prerequisite for intelligent buildings’ evaluation. It also makes a distinction between the concepts of intelligent building and sustainable building in order to determine their context and applications.